The Other precisely reveals himself in his alterity not in a shock negating the I, but as the primordial phenomenon of gentleness.
In Tai Chi we speak of "rooting" – attaching ourselves to the ground with roots of energy that extend from the soles of the feet. In fact it is more accurate to think of the legs themselves being roots – aerial roots – that drop down from the base of our trunk, and the arms being either adventitious roots – extending out to find alternative paths to support – or tendrils reaching to grasp and pull, either to claim and consume or to haul the body forward.
A thing only exists, usefully, effectively, in relation to other things – connexion makes it real. When I understand this deeply then I can let go of my fearful sense of self – the congealed entity that says no to every adventure – and dissolve into connexion. This, so spiritual discipline tells us, is the only real way to reveal and cleanse spirit – cleanse it of the anger and neuroses that, on coarser levels, seem to fuel it.
Meaning is always present. It is the spirit in the moment. When I yield it enters me and brings me into itself. I then become infused, and thereby integral to natural design. It is not my job to know Nature, let alone control or use her, but to become a willing part – to be natural. Do I need a deeper meaning than this?
Gentle Nature reveals herself when I am quiet and still. Small creatures emerge and enjoy my company. (It is alarming how we smother and scatter with a bumptious presence.) Similarly, my own Nature manifests only when I am completely still. This energy gradually thaws the frozen sea inside, and more and more of me becomes the moment. An ax in whatever form – books, teaching, inspiration – can only break the ice for it to refreeze around the ax. Ego always claims experience – perverting it to ensure its own continuance.
If we relax into the forces operating upon us then they will always stimulate – seemingly generate – spirit, which is not just the energy to deal with them but the energy to create and to understand. Gradually the veil lifts – the fog disperses – and we have a choice: whether to see more clearly or connect more deeply – rest on our laurels or dive in further. In reality spirit wont give us that choice.
The reason I suffer is because I cannot let go of the conviction that my suffering maintains and sustains my world. And in a way this conviction is true – my world depends upon my suffering. When I finally decide to stop suffering then my world will disintegrate – fall apart around me – and I will begin to experience the real world: a much more daunting prospect than living in the measly one of my own making. Until this happens everything remains an idea and I actually experience nothing.